There have been so many times I’ve been asked by all kinds of people in all kinds of circumstances, “What is God’s will for me? What does God want me to do?”
And many times the deep and detailed answers of what God’s will is for a particular person in a specific set of circumstances will be far different from what God’s will would be for another person in a different set of circumstances. Prayer to seek God’s heart – to seek God’s leading, to have God’s peace for the pace and path our lives are to take – is absolutely essential. And it may take much time to discern and clearly sense God’s will.
Yet, there are other times when God makes His will absolutely and irrefutably clear through His living and active Word. The revelation of His will at those times is not only for a particular person in a specific set of circumstances, rather, these revelations are God’s will for all of His children all of the time.
Rejoice always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
This passage even closes with “for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” It certainly can’t get much more absolute or irrefutable about what God’s will is for us here!
Rejoice always? Pray continually? Give thanks in all circumstances? This is God’s will for us? Really?
The absolute and irrefutable answer is: Yes! Easy? No. But absolutely possible.
Our God never asks us to do anything for which He will not also equip us. And God never asks us to do anything that is not for our very best and to accomplish His very highest will and purpose for each of us: “to be conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29).
Are circumstances in your life frustrating? Overwhelming? Sad? Frightening? Of course they are. We’re living in a broken – frustrating, overwhelming, sad, frightening – world. And this truth about our broken world, and our need for God’s love and help, should give us more than enough reason to pray continually! But! The brokenness of this world is not the end of the story. Nor should it be the foundation of our focus.
Instead, we are to let God’s love and good news be our focus and give us all the reason we need to rejoice always and give thanks in all circumstances! Jesus Christ has died and is risen! His Word is living and active! His Spirit is with us and within us, at every moment! Jesus is the King of all eternity! And our Lord Jesus Christ will return to rule with power and majesty for ever and ever!
So! Let’s rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances! This is, after all, God’s will for us – “his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2)!